Review by Nivla

Reviewed: 08/02/00 | Updated: 08/02/00

It's like........woah

The synopsis says it all. This game is like......woah. The entire Bemani series is like.....woah. For all of you who don't know yet, the Bemani series is a series of music simulators (Dance Dance Revolution is the exception since it is a dance simulator) made by KCET (Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo). All of the games in the series features ''hands on'' experiance. And although most of them are not very accurate simulators of the real thing, they are a great change from the regular shoot everything you see games. I'm sure all of you have been dreaming about becoming a famous and pathetically rich drummer of a extremely famous rock group when you were little. And although very a very little percentage of you actually acomplish that dream (don't give your hopes up though), Percussion Freaks will bring you as close as it can to that dream, and you don't have to know anything about the drums, or even music!

As always, this game uses a special controller. This time, the special controller comes in the form of a drum set (that should be obvious). You use sticks to beat on the drum pads. However, for those of you who know how to play the drums, or at least know what a basic drum set look like, you will notice that the setup of the drum pads are extremely weird. First of all, there are several essential elements missing. The floor tom is missing. Also, the pedal for the hi-hat is gone. The ride cymbol has mysteriously dissapeared. Also, the hi-hat is too far out in front. It should be right next to the snare on the left. The Next, the bass drum pedal goes very far up, this makes fast songs with lots of bass drumming hard to do.

The gameplay is simple. Hit the drum pads at the right time according to the indicators. Just like other Bemani games such as Beatmania, scoring will depend on how accurate you are with your timing. A bar represents your performance throughout the song. It will rise and lower during the song depending on your accuracy. If you finish the song with not enough of the bar filled up, you will fail the song and you will then have to insert new credits, or game over. Although learning the game is very simple, mastering it is a whole different story. Because of the number of indicators you have to look at, and the overall timing of the songs, this game is the toughest Bemani game there is. The timing is trickier then ever, plus some of the songs go faster then any previous in the Bemani series. There is a wide selection of songs in this game. Some are from favorites from Guitar Freaks such as ''Cutie Pie'', ''Ultimate Power, ''Across the Nightmare'', and many other songs. However, there are new ones. Most of them are really catchy, and you won't get sick of the songs.

This is by far the most challenging Bemani game so far. All the timing is very tricky to get down. And some of the songs are amazingly fast (the song I'm particularly refering to is called ''Across the Nightmare'', and is making it's return from the Guitar Freaks series). But what is very frustrating is that most of the songs actually are very easy, in the sense that all the indicators have a set pattern. It's just learning the pattern is a daunting task. The controlls for this game are perfect (just like the other Bemani games). Each drum pad has a matching indicator on screen. You just hit/tap the pad when the indicator says to do so and voila. Not hard at all. The problem with the controlls are for the really short players. But I think if you're that short, you're probably too young for your parents to let you play it anyways (don't ask me why, I'm weird, a total freak). Although it rarely happens, players sometimes miss the pad altogether (happened to me once, when I was trying to reach for the crash symbol, I accidently hit the guy next to me 'cause I was doing it so fast and I was out of controll).

The graphics in here are quite nice. The indicators do not lag when they zoom down the screen (which is very good for you because timing is crutial). However, I will make the same complaint as I did with Beatmania. I feel that the graphics would be better if they were in the background, like Dance Dance Revolution. The graphics are very similar to Beatmania here. The only difference is that the graphics of Percussion Freaks look more attractive. The audio in here is beyond perfect. The cabinet for the game has more than 4 speakers, all of them blasting with music as you play! The songs also sound very nice. They are not computer generated like most other games. But they are recorded with live instruments. The quality of the music is extremely high!

The fun factor and replay value are both high because they are interdependant on each other. The game is extremely fun because you can play it over and over again. Besides, it's always nice to release your stressful day at work by beating out your aggression on some drum pads. The replay value is extremely high because it's fun! Very fun!!

Overall, this game is a very great game, it is extremely fun to play. It is definatley worth pumping dollar after dollar into the machine (hey, I'm broke because of this game!). If you own an aracade, get this game for it! You will most definatley make a profit from it!

FINAL RANKINGS:
Gameplay:10
Challenge:10
Controlls:8.5
Graphics:8
Audio:10
Fun Factor:10
Replay Value:10
Overall:10

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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